A prominent Russian newspaper critical of the government received a formal warning on Friday for an article that compares Moscow’s increasing anti-Western stance with the writings of Adolf Hitler.
Under Russian law, two such warnings give the authorities the right to close a media outlet.
The article – If we are not the West, who are we? – argues that the promotion of a special Russian culture opposing secular European values during the standoff with the West over Ukraine repeats the strategy of Nazi Germany.
“Already Hitler in Mein Kampf set a rough Nordic culture against European debauchery and profanity,” Latynina wrote.
“This is a normal fascist trick: Under the pretext of liberating the nation from an alien culture, you free it of culture whatsoever and plunge it into the times of barbarity.”
Moscow has painted the conflict between pro-Russian separatists and the Ukrainian military as a fight against fascism, arguing that the pro-Western government in Kiev is backed by right-wing extremist groups.
Novaya Gazeta is regarded as among Russia’s most critical media outlets and was considered a possible winner of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize.